While the Benue State Government has directed farmers who were displaced from their communities by Fulani invaders to go back and commence farming activities, the farmers have cried out that they have nothing to return to as their homes and farmlands have been destroyed by the invaders.
Chairman of Internally Displaced Persons (IDPs) at the NKST Primary School, Ichwa camp, Joseph Ukpa, raised the alarm at the weekend, during the flag-off of distribution of relief materials to them by Christian Aid Nigeria in collaboration with Anglican Diocesan Development Society (ADDS) and Jireh Doo Foundation (JDF).
Ukpa noted that shortly after the state government announced the need for the IDPs to return home, but had to return to camp because their houses and farmlands were in complete ruins with no assistance to resettle.
“We tried to return to our various communities but on getting there, we discovered that our homes and farmlands were completely destroyed by the Fulani. We don’t have any money with which we can commence rebuilding our homes, neither do we have anything to start farming activities with. That is why we had to return to camp,” he said.
Ukpa noted that the only thing the return-home directive achieved was the voters registration exercise by the Independent National Electoral Commission (INEC) as everyone soon returned to camp due to hunger.
He alleged that the Fulani have been raping women in the Isherev area of Guma, sometimes in the presence of their hapless husbands.
Ukpa expressed the willingness of the displaced persons to go back home if government can help resettle them by providing them basic necessities of life such as shelter, food and security.
Earlier, Country Director of Christian Aid Nigeria, Charles Ememazor, said the donation was to identify with the IDPs in their moment of trial and to let them know that they were not alone in whatever they were going through.
While thanking ADDS and JDF for their support, Ememazor also urged well meaning Nigerians, corporate organisations and individuals to come to the aid of the IDPs to enable them return to their homes soon.